Basil pesto cream cheese spread
Prep Time: 20-25 minutes Bake Time: 375 °F 10-15 minutes Yield: 2 cups
* 1 – 2 oz. package basil leaves
* 1 cup whole walnuts
* ½ cup cream cheese
* 1 head of garlic- roasted in oven
* 1 cup olive oil
* Salt and pepper to taste
Remove the top off the head of garlic and place on a sheet pan lined with tinfoil. Cup the tinfoil and drizzle olive oil over the head of garlic. Place in the oven and bake at 375 °f for 10-15 minutes.
Remove from oven and let cool. Once cool to the touch, squeeze out the garlic cloves and place in the blender. Try to keep the olive oil that is remaining at the bottom of the tinfoil, whatever you have left add that to the blender. Add the remaining ingredients and blend until you get a smooth paste consistency.
Prep Time: 15-20 minutes Rest time: 1 – 1 ½ hours Yield: 2 – 12 inch pizzas
* 3 ½ cups bread flour, plus ½ cup for dusting
* 1 ½ cups lukewarm water
* 1 pkg. yeast
* 1 tbsp. granulated sugar
* 1 tsp. salt
* 3 tbsp olive oil, plus 1 tsp. to oil the bowl
In a large measuring bowl combine the salt, sugar and yeast into 1 ½ cups warm water. Using a wire whisk stir all the ingredients until fully incorporated. Set mixture in warm area and leave until the yeast starts to foam.
In a mixer bowl fitted with a dough attachment, add your flour and salt and blend for 15 seconds on low. Keep the mixer on low and slowly add your yeast mixture and olive oil. If dough is too wet add a little flour and if dough is too dry add a little water. You want the dough ball to be slightly tacky but firm to the touch. Blend for about 2 minutes, you do not want to over work the dough.
Remove the dough ball and place in a bowl that has 1 tsp. olive oil. Mix the ball around the dough until fully covered with the oil. Cover and let sit in a warm location for approximately 1 hour. Punch dough ball down with your fist and let sit for another 30 minutes. Remove dough ball from the bowl and
separate into two balls. You can now use the dough or place each dough ball into separate bowls with a little olive oil, cover and let sit overnight in the refrigerator.
Basil Pesto Thin Crust Pizza
Prep Time: 15 minutes Bake time: 425 °F - 10-12 minutes on a stone, 12-16 minutes on pizza pan
Yield: 3-4 servings
* 12 inch pizza dough- you don’t have to be exact
* ¾ cup basil pesto cream cheese spread
* 1 cup mozzarella cheese
* 1 cup cheddar cheese
* 2 tbsp. parmesan cheese
Heat oven to 425 °F
Place pizza stone on the center rack of the oven and let sit for approximately 30-60 minutes before using.
On a clean dry surface dust ½ cup flour over your kneading location. Start to knead the dough in the center of the floured surface in a circular pattern, turn dough over to get proper coverage of flour on each side.
Once you have a round pattern you can now take a roller pin and roll the dough out as thin as possible. Be sure to roll the pin to all corners. Once you have reached your desired thickness take a pizza cutter and cut out a circular pattern into the dough. You should have a nice round pizza pattern that’s approximately 12 inches.
Using a pizza pan, dust with corn meal and a little flour, and transfer you circular dough onto the pan. Spoon the pesto cream cheese spread in the center of the dough and spread in a circular motion. Be sure to leave about ½ inch rim from the edge uncovered, this will be the crust. Top with the mozzarella and cheddar cheeses and sprinkle the parmesan and Italian seasoning.
Gently remove from the pizza pan and place unto the pizza stone in the oven and bake for about 10-12 minutes. Halfway through baking rotate the pizza and continue baking.
To check for doneness when the pizza begins to bubble and the cheese is a nice golden brown you can remove.
If you do not have a stone leave on the pizza pan and bake for approximately 12-16 minutes.
Baking times can vary and that’s why you want to constantly check. The key is for a nice golden brown curst and melted golden brown cheese.
Remove from the oven and cut and enjoy!